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Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan (PMSMA) – Transforming Maternal And Prenatal Care In India

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    Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan (PMSMA)

    In a nation’s progress and development, the well-being of its mothers is an essential cornerstone. The Government of India has made an important move towards guaranteeing the safety and care of pregnant women through the Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan (PMSMA), realising the importance that maternal health plays in shaping a nation’s future.

    Every pregnancy is special, and it’s essential that every mom-to-be gets the special care she deserves. The reality is that any pregnant woman can face life-threatening complications with minimal or no prior warning. Therefore, it is necessary that all pregnant women have access to high-quality prenatal services that can identify and address these potentially life-threatening complications during childbirth.

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    Identifying risk factors early in pregnancy and delivery can prevent fatalities from five preventable causes- haemorrhage, sepsis, unsafe abortion, eclampsia, and obstructed labour. This objective can only be achieved when pregnant women have unhindered access to the complete spectrum of essential services tailored to their specific needs.

    This groundbreaking initiative, launched in 2016, is a testament to India’s commitment to providing accessible, affordable, and high-quality prenatal care to pregnant women across the country. 

    Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan (PMSMA) stands as a beacon of hope, working tirelessly to reduce maternal mortality rates, promote institutional deliveries, and empower pregnant women with the knowledge and resources they need to embark on their motherhood journey with confidence and security. 

    This article delves into what PMSMA is –  its objectives, key features, services, and the profound impact it has on the lives of countless expectant mothers and their families across India.

    About the Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan (PMSMA)

    The Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan is an initiative that is led by the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare (MoHFW) of the Government of India, and it serves to provide pregnant women with reliable, comprehensive, and high-quality prenatal care at no cost. This essential care is made universally available to all expectant mothers on the 9th day of each month.

    As part of the campaign, a minimum package of prenatal services is extended to mothers to be on the 9th day of every month at Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Clinics. This ensures that each pregnant woman receives at least one checkup during the 2nd or 3rd trimester of her pregnancy. To guarantee continued and timely care, clinic activities are shifted to the next working day when the ninth day of the month falls on a Sunday or holiday.

    Objectives Of Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan (PMSMA)

    The Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan has a set of objectives, all of which are dedicated to the improvement of maternal and child health. These objectives collectively include:

    1. Universal Antenatal Checkups: Ensuring that every pregnant woman in her second or third trimester receives at least one antenatal or prenatal checkup conducted by a qualified physician or specialist. This is a crucial step that facilitates early detection of potential complications and ensures timely intervention.

    2. Elevating the Quality of Care: Focusing on improving the quality of care during antenatal visits by providing a complete range of diagnostic services, screening for relevant clinical conditions, and effective management of existing conditions like anaemia, pregnancy-induced hypertension, and gestational diabetes. Additionally, the campaign stresses on the importance of counselling services and keeping detailed records of all the services provided.

    1. Extended Services: Offering additional opportunities for pregnant women who may have missed their scheduled prenatal visits, ensuring that no expectant mother is left behind in receiving essential care.

    2. Identification of High-Risk Pregnancies: Identifying and maintaining a record of high-risk pregnancies based on obstetric and medical history and existing clinical conditions. This approach ensures that those at greater risk receive specialised care and increases their chances of a safe delivery.

    3. Birth Planning and Complication Readiness: Stressing the importance of birth planning and ensuring preparedness for potential complications in each pregnant woman’s journey, particularly for those identified with risk factors or comorbid conditions.

    4. Combating Malnutrition: Placing special emphasis on the early detection, management, and treatment of malnutrition in pregnant women, promoting their overall health and that of their unborn child.

    5. Adolescent and Early Pregnancies: Recognising the unique needs of adolescent and early pregnancies, PMSMA prioritises specialised care for these individuals, acknowledging the increased challenges and vulnerabilities associated with these age groups.

    These objectives underscore the comprehensive nature of the PMSMA initiative, which aims to safeguard the health and well-being of expectant mothers, addressing a wide spectrum of maternal health needs and challenges.

    Key Features Of PMSMA

    • PMSMA is grounded in a fundamental belief: Every pregnant woman in India should be thoroughly examined by a qualified doctor to reduce the high rates of death among mothers and their newborns.

    • The provision of antenatal or prenatal checkup services under PMSMA is a collaborative effort between doctors from different specialities like OBGYNs, radiologists, and physicians. This includes both government and private doctors, and their combined effort plays a crucial role in improving maternal and neonatal health in India.

    • An essential aspect of this initiative is the monthly delivery of a minimum package of antenatal care services, which includes essential investigations and medications, to beneficiaries. These services are provided at designated public health centres in both urban and rural regions on the ninth day of each month.  These supplement the routine antenatal care offered at healthcare facilities and outreach programs.

    • The principles of a single-window system underpin the program’s design, with the objective of streamlining the provision of essential services. This means that all expectant moms who visit the PMSMA clinics undergo essential tests, such as ultrasound in the second trimester of pregnancy, and receive drugs like calcium and iron-folic acid supplements.

    • PMSMA aims to provide antenatal care to all pregnant women, especially those who haven’t registered for care, dropped out of care, or are considered high-risk. It also provides calcium supplements to all pregnant mothers who visit PMSMA clinics.

    • To enhance accessibility and service provision, OBGYNs, radiologists, and physicians from the private sector are actively encouraged to offer voluntary services at public health facilities, particularly where government sector practitioners are unavailable or inadequate.

    • As a part of this initiative, pregnant women receive Mother and Child Protection Cards and safe motherhood booklets, providing them with a valuable record of their healthcare journey and essential guidance.

    • The identification and follow-up of high-risk pregnancies is the core of the Abhiyan’s strategy. This is accomplished through the addition of stickers to the Mother and Child Protection Cards, signifying the condition and risk factors of the pregnant women. A green sticker designates women with no detected risk factors, while a red sticker indicates high-risk pregnancies, ensuring that each visit is focused on meeting the needs of the expectant mother.

    • Moreover, to facilitate engagement with the private and voluntary sectors, a National Portal for PMSMA and a mobile application have been developed, fostering a collaborative approach to this critical healthcare endeavour.

    • The ‘IPledgeFor9’ Achievers Awards were created to honour the contributions of volunteers to PMSMA while also recognising and honouring individual and team accomplishments. These awards serve as a testament to the commitment and dedication of individuals and teams, elevating the success of the program in states and districts throughout India.

    Eligibility criteria for the Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan PMSMA Scheme

    The Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan scheme is designed to be inclusive and broad-reaching. The program is open to all pregnant women across India, regardless of their socio-economic status. It specifically extends its reach to pregnant women hailing from economically disadvantaged backgrounds, with a focus on addressing the healthcare access barriers they may encounter.

    Services provided under PMSMA

    Under the Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan, a range of essential services is extended to pregnant women, encompassing:

    1. Comprehensive Antenatal Care: Pregnant women receive thorough antenatal checkups, inclusive of consultations, diagnostic tests, and medical assessments, all of which are administered by qualified healthcare professionals.

    2. Health and Nutrition Guidance: Expectant mothers benefit from informative counselling sessions that promote and educate them on maintaining a healthy lifestyle during pregnancy. This includes guidance on nutrition, the significance of regular physical activity, and the importance of essential immunisations.

    3. Diagnostic Testing: To ensure the well-being of both the mother and the unborn child, crucial diagnostic tests are conducted. These tests encompass blood screenings, urine analyses, ultrasounds, and screenings for infections like HIV, all contributing to a comprehensive and vigilant monitoring of maternal and fetal health.

    Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan Benefits

    1. Timely Recognition of High-Risk Pregnancies: The program assumes a pivotal role in the early detection of pregnancies at high risk, facilitating prompt interventions and the apt management of potential complications.

    2. Elevated Maternal and Neonatal Health: Through regular antenatal care checkups and access to specialised medical guidance, the initiative fosters improved maternal and neonatal health outcomes. This, in turn, reduces the risks and complications associated with the pregnancy and childbirth process.

    3. Increased Awareness and Education: PMSMA actively champions health and nutrition counselling, empowering women to make informed choices concerning their own well-being and the health of their unborn children. This, in effect, cultivates heightened awareness regarding the significance of antenatal care and the adoption of healthful practices during pregnancy.

    Facilities to Avail of the Services Under the Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan   

    1. Specialised Healthcare Centers: Government health facilities that have been earmarked for the PMSMA program operate across the nation. These centres are equipped with skilled medical professionals, essential diagnostic tools, and the necessary infrastructure to ensure comprehensive care for pregnant women.

    2. Registration: To avail of the benefits, women can conveniently register for the scheme at their nearest government health facility. Alternatively, they can also complete the registration process through the official website or helpline numbers provided by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, ensuring accessibility and ease of enrollment.


    In conclusion, the Pradhan Mantri Surakshit Matritva Abhiyan (PMSMA) stands as a commendable initiative, working diligently to improve maternal and child healthcare in India. The program’s focus on accessible and high-quality antenatal care underscores its commitment to the well-being of expectant mothers, contributing to the reduction of maternal and neonatal mortality rates.

    Moreover, in our ever-evolving digital landscape, there are crowdfunding platforms like Ketto, which help people raise funds for a number of medical treatments and surgeries. It helps connect people who need help to people who can help, and thanks to the generosity of its donor community and the power of crowdfunding, several people have received life-saving medical care and have recovered. 

    Just as PMSMA strives to improve healthcare accessibility, Ketto helps make healthcare, a basic need, affordable and accessible to all. Through Ketto, individuals can contribute to a number of noble causes, from funding crucial medical treatments to supporting social initiatives that bring about positive change, like funding a child’s education, helping a senior citizen live with dignity and so on.

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